TOP 4 Must-Have Green Appliances For Your Home

The increased…

interest in greener lifestyles and doing our part to save the planet has led to a greatly enhanced selection of eco-friendly gadgets and appliances that help homeowners save energy and conserve water.

While lowering your carbon footprint and taking steps to decrease your family’s impact on the environment are noble acts in their own right, you can also personally benefit from these actions by enjoying the savings that come with lower water bills and cutting your home’s energy costs.

When building or remodeling your home, proper insulation, eco-friendly flooring and energy-saving windows are just a few examples of the multitude of environmentally sound additions you can make that can benefit both your pocketbook and the planet.

You can take this even further by limiting your use of traditional, water-wasting lawns in your landscaping and opting for greener options, such as paving stones and artificial grass, which will both save water and beautify your home’s exterior.

Of course, if you are working towards creating a home that is energy efficient and lowers your water consumption, one of the most important investments you can make is choosing eco-friendly appliances that will keep your home running smoothly, your family comfortable and living well, and your utility bills at a minimum.

To this end, here are the top four must-have green appliances for your home:

1. An Energy-Efficient Refrigerator 

Your refrigerator runs 24 hours a day every day of the year and is one of the appliances in your home that uses the most energy.

If you have a refrigerator that is more than a few years old, you can be sure that it is not as efficient as newer models, and you should consider replacing it as part of your overall plan to lower your energy consumption.

When shopping for a new refrigerator, one of the most important things to look for is an ENERGY STAR qualification.

Refrigerators that sport the ENERGY STAR logo must use at least 20% less energy than other models.

To take it a step further and save even more energy, choose a model that does not have an automatic ice maker and that has the freezer positioned above the refrigerator.

If you cannot find one with the freezer on top, the next best option is a model with the freezer on the bottom; side-by-side models tend to be the least efficient.

2. An Eco-Friendly Washing Machine

Lots of people go out of their way to purchase clothing that is manufactured in an environmentally-conscious manner, but those same people often do not realize that the vast majority of a single clothing item’s carbon footprint happens in the laundry room.

The amount of energy, water and emissions required to create your favorite organic cotton t-shirt is just a fraction of what is needed to clean that shirt over its life cycle.

The best choice for an earth-friendly washer is an ENERGY STAR-qualified, front-loading model that has settings for different cycle choices and load sizes.

ENERGY STAR also rates top-loading models, so it is possible to find a top loader that is more efficient; however, the manner in which front loaders work allows for less water and energy usage, generally requires less detergent and removes more water from clothing during the spin cycle, which means your clothes can spend less time in the dryer.

Since your dryer is one of the biggest culprits when it comes to home energy consumption, anything that can reduce drying time will help you lower your carbon footprint and save money.

3. An ENERGY STAR-Approved Dishwasher

According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), dishwashers manufactured prior to 1994 waste over 10 gallons of water during just one cycle.

Replacing your older dishwasher with a new, ENERGY STAR-qualified model can save an average of 1,300 gallons of water throughout the dishwasher’s lifetime.

Of course, if you have a large family or entertain often, you can expect to save even more water by switching to a new, energy-efficient model.

4. An Efficient Air Purifier

Portable room air cleaners purify your home’s air by removing indoor pollutants, such as pet dander, pollen, mold, pesticides, household cleaning products and tobacco smoke.

This makes your home a healthier and more comfortable environment for your family, but older models can also increase your utility bills more than necessary.

Air purifiers are among the most affordable home appliances, which means this is one easy step you can take towards outfitting your home with green appliances.

Newer models that are ENERGY STAR qualified have lower greenhouse gas emissions and can save your family more than $200 in energy costs over the product’s lifetime.

Final Thoughts…

Green appliances are a must when building or remodeling a home.

With the array of options available that fit most budgets and any décor, choosing eco-friendly washing machines, dishwashers and refrigerators is an easy way to do your part in reducing your carbon footprint, while also enjoying the money-saving benefits of lower utility bills.